Date of Award

2003

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

School

School of Education

Program

Counseling Psychology, Ph.D.

First Advisor

Nancy J. Carbonell

Second Advisor

Wilfred G. A. Futcher

Third Advisor

Dennis E. Waite

Abstract

Problem. Few studies have addressed burnout among Seventh-day Adventist (SDA) clergy. Many SDA ministers report experiencing high stress in their ministries and they find it difficult to function optimally under these circumstances. Others experience serious complications that lead them to terminate their work as ministers.

Method. A quantitative research design was used for an ex post facto study of 130 pastors from the Pacific Union Conference. They completed two questionnaires: the Pastoral Services Demographic Data Sheet (PSDDS) and the Maslach Burnout Inventory (MBI).

Results. This study examined 12 variables and found that 10 variables had a significant relationship to at least one of the three subscales of the burnout inventory. Four clusters of variables were found that would lead one to be more prone to burnout. According to the study, 13.9% of the pastors in the study were experiencing average to high levels of burnout.

Conclusions. This study found the following for the Emotional Exhaustion subscale: 18 out of 130, or 13.9%, scored in the high degree of burnout range on Emotional Exhaustion; 34 out of 130, or 26.1%, scored in the average or moderate degree of burnout range; and 78 out of 130, or 60%, scored in the low range for burnout. The results for the Depersonalization subscale were as follows: 13 or 10% were in the high degree of the burnout range; 30 respondents or 23.1% were in the average or moderate range for burnout; and 87 or 67% were in the low range for burnout. The results for the Personal Accomplishment subscale, based only on low and high, found that 81 respondents or 62% scored in the low range for burnout and 49 or 38% scored in the high degree of burnout range.

Subject Area

Burn out (Psychology)--Religious aspects--Christianity

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